VA offers $80M in industry contest

Department asks contractors for best ideas on telehealth, dialysis

The Veterans Affairs Department will give up to $80 million in contracts to the industry winners of the third round of the VA Industry Innovation competition, officials have announced.

The goal of the competition is to stimulate ideas to increase veterans’ access to VA services, to reduce or control costs, to enhance VA performance or to improve the quality of service VA delivers to veterans, according to a notice published June 7 on the Federal Business Opportunities Web site.

The VAi2 competition seeks ideas from contractors for innovative housing for homeless veterans, telehealth solutions for medical care delivered remotely, new models for dialysis and renal disease prevention, improvements in polytrauma care, reduction of adverse drug events, and solutions to assist veterans in starting new businesses, the notice said.

Each award contract will have a two-year period of performance. The VA prefers to award fixed-price contracts when possible, the notice stated.

The VA has scheduled an Industry Day webinar for June 16.

The industry competition represents the third round of Vai2 programs. In August 2009, the Veterans Benefits Administration sponsored a contest for collecting ideas to improve claims processing, and more than 7,000 employees submitted ideas. In February, the Veterans Health Administration and VA Office of Information and Technology solicited ideas to improve health IT systems. On May 28, VA Secretary Eric Shinseki announced 26 winning ideas under that competition.

About the Author

Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.

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